The Akuna West Head Spring Classic took place in over cast conditions, however this didn’t stop some standout performances in various grades with MWCC dominating the podium. Tom Patton had the ride of the day with his victory in A Grade and Donald Ward taking home a $600 prize thanks to Sydney Altitude Training Centre.
With the NSW State Masters on this weekend, numbers were a little down on previous months, we also saw a number of riders realising that their skills weren’t as good as their egos and perhaps if we are never able to take a turn on the front or are getting dropped on the first climb – then swallow that pride and sign onto the hubbard divisions of B and C. You may find that not not only will your race last longer, but it will be more enjoyable to – you may even feel like you are actually racing!
Congrats to Donald Ward, who won the $600 prize pack from Sydney Altitude Training. This will allow Donald to experience training at altitude, which will hopefully allow him to improve on his second place in C Hubbard. This prize was open to all MWCC riders who had raced over the last two months. Thanks to Sydney Altitude for providing the prize and supporting our racing.
Why so serious??
A Grade still had a star studded field with those who aren’t yet calling themselves a ‘Master’ taking the opportunity to test their legs on the undulating three laps. Fresh from the Tour of Borneo, GPM Wilson rider Dan Bonello even turned up in the skinsuit, obviously hoping to partake in another long range assault – however he would be confided to the bunch in this race.
The man of the day was Tom Patton who launched an all assault on the first lap of the race and after a short period he was joined by two riders from the NRS development team – Albion Cycles. To the observer on course, no punter would have given Tom much hope with two riders from one team in the attack with him. However all his traiing and no racing paid off because rather than wait for them to attack him, he simply rode them off his wheel and continued Tony Martin style on a lone attack.
The two Albion riders dropped back to the chasing peloton who simply had no answer to the tan and thighs of Patton, who simply rode away to victory. It was certainly the most dominant display that has been witnessed for an extended period on the Akuna West Head course. Doping Crusader Dan Bonello, wondered if Patton should be signed up to some of the Iranian cycling teams, such was his display of stomping power. Patton would continue on solo and take a comfortable victory in front of his home crowd.
The race for the scraps was a bunch sprint, with Pro Conti rider Justin Morris of Team Novo Nordisk taking the cookies for second place – although i am not sure if a rider who is part of a team and spokesman for Type 1 diabetes, can take the cookies? Maybe a bad pun on my behalf. He rolled Lachlan Edwards of the St George NRS Development Squad.
B Grade was a single bunch and it was missing some of the usual big hitters, with Geoff Hillbourne of RBCC taking a month off and Mitch Dixon of MWCC on marshal duty. It still meant a solid race, with even James McAdam who usual is holding the clipboard, taking off the commissaire cap and mixing it up with the B Grade punters.
It seemed from the beginning that everyone wanted it to come down to a bunch sprint – which is strange because it seems that no more than 6 riders crest that final berg before a break back to the stragglers – so some new tactics may have to be considered by a number of riders. There were a few hard workers in the bunch including an unknown rider from Peloton Sports and some rider in a Belgium Beer Cafe kit. However with every break being chased down, it was the final bunch kick which was decided by about a wheel length between 4 riders.
In the end it was Nathan Crump who made a late charge around the outside to take the main prize and leave the crumbs to Club Sec Alexis Kaless who had about a tyre width on Nate Galang, who himself had abouta tyre width on Darren Byers of RBCC.
C Grade had everyone thinking they were in the C Prestige category and only a very small handful of riders selecting Hubbard. A late decision was made to send the hubbards off only about a minute behind the Prestige Category but they wouldn’t be lonely for long.
By the turn off to West Head, the C Prestige category had split into two distinct groups – even though the pace was no quicker than previous months – so there goes that excuse. The second bunch filtered back and was consumed by the Hubbards on there way up and so a decision was made that, the entire second group would become the Hubbard race. Riders who were dropped should perhaps consider their sign on status a little more next month.
The winners of the C Prestige race was John Ward ahead of Andrew Picking and Dan Galloway.
Robin Vanderkreeke who rightly signed into Hubbard also took the victory in that division ahead of Donald Ward and Matthew Osborne.
In D Grade, unfortunately no report to hand, however Peter Sagan look a like Pece Tasevski took the win ahead of Chris Wildman and Sean Carroll.
All MWCC riders who won their race and were in club kit were also entitled to double their prize money and with the domination out on course by MWCC this month, it meant that a very solid prize pool was given away.
Next race – 13 October with pre entry on trybooking opening from the 20 August.
1. Tom Patton GPM Wilson (MWCC)
2. Justin Morris Team Novo Nordisk (NSCC)
3. Lachlan Edwards St George Development (St George)
1. Nathan Crump (MWCC)
2. Alexis Kaless (MWCC)
3. Nate Galang (MWCC)
1. John Ward (MWCC)
2. Andrew Picking (MWCC)
3. Dan Galloway (Unknown)
1. Robin Vanderkreeke (MWCC)
2. Donald Ward (MWCC)
3. Matthew Osborne (NSCC)
1. Pece Tasevski (MWCC)
2. Chris Wildman (MWCC)
3. Sean Carroll (MWCC)